Harkila Pro Hunter Suit
- By Chris Parkin
- 2 Comments
- Last updated: 25/01/2017
When you see the prices of £399.99 for the Jacket and £229.99 for the Trousers, the Prohunter suit is what you might consider an expensive option for the keen amateur or professional stalker, but Harkila have no hesitation in labelling it the premium clothing offered throughout their range - and for a number of important reasons.
Initial inspection showed some fine workmanship and materials along with a generous fit and subtle key features. Both items feature a soft comfortable `woodland` liner coupled to a durable Gore-Tex performance shell. When moving around, all the fabrics remained quiet and the cut of the trousers - although a little slimmer - was high backed and still allowed generous flexibility in the legs. Belt loops and buttons for braces are featured - and braces on hunting trousers are worth their weight in gold.
Hip, thigh and rear pockets on the trousers are generous without being cumbersome and along with snow tabs in the legs, round off a very good bottom half.
The Jacket shows a removable hood with useful adjustment cord. Cuffs at the hem and wrists allow a snug fit, but generous enough in arm and torso length to not ride up if prone. For extra visibility, the upper arms have zipped pockets containing orange high viz `signal bands` and along with lined game pocket at the rear. There are chest pockets, internal valuable pockets and large cartridge/ gloved hand pockets at the waist/hip. Both chest pockets contain a little strap that holds the cartridge pockets open for fast access and an upper chest radio pocket has a radio antenna clip. A dual direction zip, with stud closure storm flap offers total wind and water resistance from chin to pelvis.
Items of these prices have to offer excellent weather resistance, warmth and comfort; and every element of their construction must be rugged and hardwearing. The suit comes with a 5-year warranty guaranteeing materials and craftsmanship and this latter term is illustrated in some of the finer details such as the well tailored fit, and features such as underarm ventilation slots that when either zipped or open, lie perfectly flat causing no discomfort. A 40 degree gentle wash is recommended for cleaning.
My first outing in the jacket was on a bitterly cold driven shoot in early December, the jacket not only withstood
the elements, it looked smart in an environment it was not necessarily designed for. It offered easy movement in a shooting sport needing fluid motion and repetitive gunfit. As the English weather would have it, a day out stalking around Christmas saw the temperature in double figures and with only a single fleece underneath, coupled with long stationary periods, was never excessively hot or cold. The English climate needs a jacket that is perhaps a layer to defend against wind and rain rather than to insulate and the fit seemed comfortable whether I wore thermals and fleece layers or nothing but a shirt and tie underneath. I hate being hot as much as being cold, and versatility is the word here, full marks from me!